Diakite, 24, went unselected in the 2020 draft. He signed a two-way deal with the Bucks shortly thereafter, then signed a multi-year deal at the end of the season. Only $100K of his salary was guaranteed for next season, however, making it easier for Milwaukee to waive him.
Diakite was a force in the G League during his 12 games last season. He averaged 18.5 points, 10.4 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per contest, shooting 58% from the floor. The 6’9″ Virginia product will have the ability to add depth for a young Thunder frontcourt this season.
Because Diakite is on a three-year contract, the Thunder couldn’t use the minimum salary exception to claim him and had to instead use part of a traded player exception, as Bobby Marks of ESPN notes (via Twitter). The team likely used a portion of its $9.59MM TPE from last season’s George Hill deal.
Oklahoma City also waived guard Charlie Brown Jr. in a separate transaction, the team said. Assuming he goes unclaimed, Brown will reach free agency this week after spending part of last season with the Thunder. The 24-year-old appeared in nine games, averaging 4.4 points, 1.9 rebounds and 16.9 minutes per contest.